August 4, 2008

Finished Mounting Ailerons, Flaps - 4.0 hrs.

Work continued today to finish the mounting and adjusting of the ailerons. Then, it was on to the flaps!

As I scratched my head trying to figure out what to use for trimming the ailerons, I found a scrap piece of solid oak in my shop. This was perfect. I drilled holes so I can bolt it to the wing through the tooling holes. It's rock solid. Also, as you can see, I drew lines on either side of the bolt holes up to the end of the piece.

Then I drilled a peep hole right at the end so you can look through the hole and see where the end tip of the aileron is. Adjust the length of the pushrod as necessary until you get it right. Perfect! This worked out very nicely. I highly recommend this method. I'm going to keep this piece of oak on hand. I may need it again.

Now it's time to move on to the flaps. I kept the aileron in the neutral position for all of this work. It made me nervous to think of drilling the flap hinge without devoting proper time and care to make sure they are lined up as perfect as I can get them. So I really took my time with this process. The flap hinge pin was inserted to hold the wing half of the hinge in place, and then carefully clamped to the wing.

With the aileron in the neutral position, the trailing edge of the flap is lined up with the trailing edge of the aileron. I used this yellow clamp to hold it exactly in place while I measure and evaluate everything.

You follow the plans and make sure the gap between the aileron and the flap is exactly right. The gap looks parallel, too, so that's a good sign.

Looks great so far.

Next, I laid a long straightedge across both the aileron and the flap to make sure the trailing edges were exactly straight with each other. I made small adjustments in the clamping until this was as good as I could get it.

I wanted to use another method, to cross-check and verify in another way that this was straight, so I got out my SmartTool and checked the angle of the aileron trailing edge, and then the flap. It didn't matter so much what this angle was, just that they were both the same.

Perfect! Once I knew that this was as good as I can get it, I started drilling the flap hinge to the wing. I drilled one hole and clecoed, then another, using a cleco in every hole. I checked with the straightedge and SmartTool from time to time along the way to make sure things were still straight.

And here's the flap... all drilled to the wing!

Wow, how cool! I can't believe how much different the wings look with the ailerons and flaps in place. After staring at these wings for so many months without them, this is a big difference. They add a lot of surface area to the wing structure. Now to take it all apart for the usual deburring, priming, and finally the riveting. But before doing that, it was on to the right wing to repeat everything done here tonight on the left one. A while later, I had both ailerons fitted and both flaps drilled to the wing. What a great feeling.

<< Previous | Home | Next >>

Contact me: swayze "at" (replace "at" with the @ sign... no spaces... you know the deal)